[Grammar] The use of "is" and "are" in a setance

Status
Not open for further replies.

Johnny_N

New member
Joined
Mar 12, 2013
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
English
Home Country
South Africa
Current Location
South Africa
Please assist with the correct use of the words "is" and "are"

When to place them and how to correctly use them?

Thank you :-?
 

5jj

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Member Type
Retired English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
Czech Republic
Current Location
Czech Republic
Welcome to the forum, Johnny. :hi:

That is rather too broad a question to answer in one post. Have you examples of specific problems with these verbs?
 

Johnny_N

New member
Joined
Mar 12, 2013
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
English
Home Country
South Africa
Current Location
South Africa
5jj, Here are some examples I have and would appreciate the assistance / correct use

My mom and dad ARE / IS

My mom, together with my dad, IS/ARE

My mom, as well as the rest of my family, IS/ARE

My mom, and to a lesser extent by dad, IS/ARE
 

SoothingDave

VIP Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2009
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
5jj, Here are some examples I have and would appreciate the assistance / correct use

My mom and dad ARE / IS

My mom, together with my dad, IS/ARE

My mom, as well as the rest of my family, IS/ARE

My mom, and to a lesser extent by dad, IS/ARE

"And" forms a plural subject. Use "are."

In the other cases "mom" is the subject and the rest is simply a prepositional phrase acting as a modifier. Use "is."
 

konungursvia

VIP Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2009
Member Type
Academic
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Canada
5jj, Here are some examples I have and would appreciate the assistance / correct use

My mom and dad ARE / IS

My mom, together with my dad, IS/ARE

My mom, as well as the rest of my family, IS/ARE

My mom, and to a lesser extent by dad, IS/ARE

My mom and dad are...

My mom, [any parenthetical complement here], IS....

So, you should use IS for the last three, as the phrases such as "together with my dad" do not form part of the subject, grammatically.
 

whitemoon

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 22, 2006
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
Burmese
Home Country
Myanmar
Current Location
Myanmar
What do you think this one?
If we assume "my mon and dad" as a single unit like a husband and wife and a tongue and tooth, we can write
"My mon and dad is very old" like "A husband and wife is a tongue and tooth".
 

konungursvia

VIP Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2009
Member Type
Academic
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Canada
That is only possible if "My mom and dad" is the name of a restaurant or other business. Two people are two people.
 

SoothingDave

VIP Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2009
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
What do you think this one?
If we assume "my mon and dad" as a single unit like a husband and wife and a tongue and tooth, we can write
"My mon and dad is very old" like "A husband and wife is a tongue and tooth".

If we thought of "mom and dad" like we did "bacon and eggs," you would be correct. But we do not think of "mom and dad" as a single unit.
 

whitemoon

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 22, 2006
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
Burmese
Home Country
Myanmar
Current Location
Myanmar
But you, a native speaker, do think of "husband and wife" as a single unit. Why don't you think of "mom and dad" as a single unit?
 

SoothingDave

VIP Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2009
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
But you, a native speaker, do think of "husband and wife" as a single unit. Why don't you think of "mom and dad" as a single unit?

I don't think of "husband and wife" as a single unit either.
 

whitemoon

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 22, 2006
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
Burmese
Home Country
Myanmar
Current Location
Myanmar
A/an can be used before two nouns as a singule unit, I have learned. The example is "A husband and wife is a tongue and tooth".
 

5jj

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Member Type
Retired English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
Czech Republic
Current Location
Czech Republic
A/an can be used before two nouns as a singule unit, I have learned. The example is "A husband and wife is a tongue and tooth".
That is not natural English.
 

Tdol

Editor, UsingEnglish.com
Staff member
Joined
Nov 13, 2002
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
British English
Home Country
UK
Current Location
Japan
It sounds like a foreign idiom or saying to me- it's not natural English IMO.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top